Power’s Out


Late yesterday afternoon we had a large storm system move through our area. We had a tornado warning so we grabbed some projects (Mom got her coffee too) and headed to the crawlspace. Mom had her knitting, Gabrielle and I had our Algebra, and I also had hair ties I was making 🙂 But listening to the storm and talking was much more interesting; I don’t think anyone really worked on anything! Besides, Dad got home from work, and Nathaniel swung in on his way home from work to take shelter…the crawlspace got crowded fast!


After the worst part moved through, we came out. Thankfully we didn’t have much damage. The neighbor’s trees had taken out the wires and hence the power, and our spruces were tipped from the wind. Mom made scrambled eggs for supper (yay for gas stoves!), and then we hung out until the rain stopped. The power came back on around seven, just in time for me to get water to my chickens, and for mom to have water to wash dishes 🙂



Bathroom Remodel

Dad has been remodeling the downstairs bathroom for the past six months. This past week he began on the floor, so he is about halfway done with the project. Here is a picture taken before Dad started taking the bathroom apart-IMG_2780and below are some pictures that I took this morning:

DSCN2368DSCN2372DSCN2370Dad pretty much took the whole bathroom apart; the toilet, sink, and tub came out, and he repainted and installed a new shower unit. Then he did some rewiring for the heated floor, and a little plumbing for the pedestal sink; last week he laid the wiring for the floor and spread mortar over it. The mortar is still wet, so I had to get these pictures from the carpet in the hall 🙂

When the bathroom is complete I will post finished pictures, especially of the shower unit which is amazing!



Painting in Our Craft/Etsy Room




DSCN1914.JPG Late last week we started repainting our new craft room (Kerstin moved out, and since we use this room for all our photoshoots for Etsy we are turning it into a craft room. We should probably just call it our Etsy room though 🙂

Dad has been busy remodeling the bathroom downstairs, so the job of painting the room fell to Gabrielle and me. At first we were only going to repaint the green walls. However I did some touch-ups on the opposite walls and ceiling that didn’t didn’t blend in, so I ended up painting the whole room. I stayed up late last night finishing the ceiling, and although I didn’t get much sleep, at least I don’t have to paint today!  Yay!

Our plans for the room after the paint has dried a bit more include moving our Etsy inventory in and hanging pictures that our nieces painted. We also want a comfy chair or sofa to curl up to knit or read books in and new blinds or curtains.


Angel Food Cake


As much as I enjoy angel food cake from a box mix, I have always wanted to make it from scratch. This is the second time I have tried it and I am very pleased with the results! The recipe I used was from Chef in Training, who, I believe, found it on Food Network.


Poor little buddy Moses wants a slice.. :’)

We plan to have this cake for dessert after supper tonight. Most likely we will top it with whipped cream and cherries. I think I will make it again sometime soon because it was so much fun do!

~ Gabrielle

Ginger Ale Jello Salad for Our Dinner Party


Last evening we invited guests over for dinner. Mom, Gabrielle, and I had been planning this all week- the menu, the seating arrangements, and the games that we would play afterwards. Of course, it didn’t go smoothly (our guests all arrived half an hour late!) but over all we had a lovely evening 🙂

Before we even thought of what the main dish would be, we had decided to make this ginger ale jello salad for the side dish. It’s sweet tangy taste was a perfect addition to the main dish which was baked roast and vegetables. We found the recipe in a Mennonite cookbook; I hope it is okay that we share it with you!


Ginger Ale Gelatin Salad

3 envelopes unflavored gelatin (3 T. each)

Âź cup cold water

2 cups boiling water

ž cup sugar

½ cup lemon juice

2 cups ice cold ginger ale

1 (20 oz) can pineapple tidbits, drained (reserve the juice)

2 cups seedless fresh grapes (white or red, or mixed), cut in half lengthwise


2 eggs

½ cup sugar

2 Tablespoons flour

ž cup reserved pineapple juice

1 ½ Tablespoons butter

2 cups thawed whipped topping

Soak gelatin in cold water until softened. Add boiling water, and stir until dissolved. Add sugar and lemon juice. Cool to room temperature. Add ginger ale. Chill until mixture begins to congeal. Mix in pineapple and grapes. Pour into ring mold. Chill until set. Un-mold on greens to serve (I un-molded mine onto a cake stand-no greens! That would make it hideous.) For dressing, beat eggs, sugar, and flour together in saucepan. Mix in pineapple juice. Cook until thickened, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in butter until melted. Chill thoroughly. Fold whipped cream into mixture. Serve dressing in center of ring mold.


I love jello salads 🙂 The vintage look is usually quite hideous, but when you make one, mold it in a bundt cake pan, and turn it out onto a cake stand with simple garnishes, it looks amazing.




Afternoon Lattes


Mom and Elisabeth and I have been working on schoolwork all morning and early afternoon. When you have been reading a complicated chapter of science, doing math corrections, and struggling through Spanish for the past few hours, you need a little something to boost your spirits and restore “the little grey cells”! Mom and Elisabeth both asked me if I would make them lattes, which I thought was a wonderful suggestion 🙂


Now, if hazelnut lattes and cookies don’t help your brain to function properly again…maybe you should take a nap. I don’t have my latte recipe written down yet, but when I do I will be sure to post it!


~ Gabrielle






This morning I prepared a bowl of plain Chobani yogurt mixed with sliced strawberries and granola for my breakfast. I have been thinking about blogging lately and decided that there is no better time than the present to start again! The past six months have been very difficult and busy for our family and this blog seems to have been one of the things which fell to the side. I hope to be able to do some posts within the next few weeks though and ease back into blogging.

Thank you to all those who have continued to follow A Homespun Country Life despite our negligence to it 🙂

~ Gabrielle





Denim Skirt from Jeans

DSCN8360This summer I wore the knees out in a pair of work jeans. I think it was from kneeling beside the kitty pool to check on and feed all the broiler chicks that we raised. Anyway, I decided to try making a skirt from the jeans!

DSCN8379I cut the jeans off at the knees, then I  rip-stitched the inside seam of the leg. Many tutorials for making a skirt from jeans showed cutting the inside seams out. Even though rip-stitching is more work, it will not only give you more fabric to work with, but an easy guideline for sewing the inserts to the skirt.

Once I had the seams opened up, I laid the soon-to-be-skirt on a table and slid a small cutting mat between the front and back layers. The cutting mat prevented me from pinning the front and back together as I pinned the inserts into place.

DSCN8375The inserts were definitely tricky. I used the denim for the lower legs of the jeans for the inserts. As you can see, I didn’t have quite large enough of a piece for the back insert, so I had to run the insert at an angle. I was hesitant at first to do this, but I love the character that it gives the skirt!

It took me a while to get the inserts to hang as flat as possible (many of the skirts made from jeans tend to “bubble out” in the inserts, and I tried to avoid that look), but in the end I decided that the style of the skirt was A-line, so the inserts are going to be full!

But I did try the skirt on many many times as I pinned the inserts in and after I basted the seams. Basting really helped because then I got to see how the skirt hung without the weight of the pins.

DSCN8381Making a skirt from jeans has always seemed intimidating to me, but now that I know how to do it, I am excited to try another one. I absolutely love my new skirt!



Thank you for visiting A Homespun Country Life!


Egg Sandwiches made over a Campfire


Gabrielle and I did quite a bit of cooking over campfires this past weekend. We both agree that campfire cooking is the most fun! We aren’t really good at building fires yet…it took us thirty minutes to build the first one. And the wood we used was damp from rain, so our fires were smoky. It was still fun; there is something really satisfying about building a fire for cooking a meal.

Our chickens are laying nineteen to two dozen eggs a day, hence why we made egg sandwiches. Also, eggs are really easy to fry on a fire. And if you don’t like fried eggs, well, try frying them on a campfire! They are way better then eggs cooked on the stovetop.

While Gabrielle was frying the eggs, I put together a platter of cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes for the sandwiches. We toasted our bread on the fire while the eggs were cooking. The sandwiches were delicious! We wanted to make seconds, but we decided that we should make our brother a sandwich instead since he would be home soon 😉


Thank you for visiting A Homespun Country Life!



Independence Day Fireworks

IMG_1011IMG_1010IMG_1002IMG_0997Last evening we went to our small town’s firework show. We have been doing this for the last three years, and it has become a nice end to our Fourth of July days. The pictures are not very good, but I hope that you enjoy them anyway! It is quite difficult to get pictures of fireworks, so I only tried a few before giving up to just enjoy the show.  (Just so you know, the colorful fuzzy things at the bottom of each photo are lights that are strung along the fence on the river 🙂

The fireworks are lit in the baseball park; but we usually park the Jeep across the river in the hotel parking lot because from there we see the fireworks burst above the river and tree tops. It is a magnificent sight!


Thank you for visiting A Homespun Country Life, and I hope you had a wonderful weekend celebrating our country!